As part of my quest to find the best croissant in Paris, I got together with a couple of friends to hold a blind tasting of croissants from six different boulangeries in the 18th arrondissement in the north of Paris.
Of the six varieties, two were 'croissant ordinaire' (i.e. not a 'croissant au beurre') and you can tell those two because of their shape (like a crab, as I used to think of it when I was a kid) as opposed to the slightly longer, thinner croissant beurres. We included them to decide for once and for all if they really are inferior to butter croissants.
Starting with my least favourite, here's the run-down:
In 6th place, is Croissant #2
It was one of those ordinaires
and it was horrible. Far too dry, over cooked, no taste, nothing. We decided that it was rather more a bad brioche in the form of a croissant. I think my note (see photo on the right) sums it up pretty accurately.
Next from bottom, was the second ordinaire,
This was also too dry, with little to no flavour. There was, however, something strange that I thought at first was the coffee that I'd just drank messing with my taste buds because I could have sworn there was a taste of paprika. It probably wasn't me imagining it because even when I went back for seconds, that taste was still there. My friend as well noticed something unusual about it but couldn't put his finger on what that taste was.
In fourth place, Croissant #4
In my opinion, these were the least attractive croissants of the bunch. The pastry was coming away from the body and it needed some more butter. I rated this one only 5 out of 10, but the two other people I was with both rated it in third place.